MARCH 8, 2018
McLaren denies it's in a post-Honda crisis
Leading McLaren figures are denying the British team is still in crisis even after dumping Honda.
Between 2015 and 2017, Honda got the blame for McLaren's struggles.
But the Japanese manufacturer is now at Toro Rosso, and having a trouble-free winter.
"It's logical that we are being compared to Toro Rosso," McLaren executive Zak Brown said.
"Honda is doing a great job, but my attitude hasn't changed. I suspected that sooner or later they would get it right and we wish them the best.
"But we're focused on ourselves," he added.
McLaren itself is at the bottom of the winter mileage charts, with the newly all-orange car regularly breaking down in the second Barcelona test.
But Fernando Alonso said he is not worried.
"If Australia was tomorrow, we would be ready," said the Spaniard.
"Of course we planned to do more laps, but I've been doing this for 18 years and problems happen in testing.
"The difference is that today, there are hundreds of journalists here and even a red flag causes hysteria.
"But there is nothing fundamentally wrong with this car. I'm sleeping peacefully," Alonso insisted.
Even team boss Eric Boullier says the Barcelona problems are not getting him down.
"This is part of the game. We are sure that we will deal with everything," said the Frenchman.
"We have a new engine supplier and a completely new car, but there are no special alarms. Give us time and everything will be alright," Boullier added.
He denied that most of the problems can be traced back to the rear end of the 2018 car, featuring a particularly tight layout.
"No, it has nothing to do with it," Boullier insisted.
"We have tried to create the best car in the championship and we are sure that our direction is right."